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Junagadh
General Information about Junagadh

Location: Junagadh, Gujarat
Country: India
Population 2,27,530

Junagadh is a city and a municipal corporation, the headquarters of Junagadh district in the Indian state of Gujarat. The city is located at the foot of the Girnar hills. Literally translated, Junagadh means "Old Fort". It is also known as "Sorath", the name of the earlier Muslim-ruled Princely State of Junagadh.

Places of Interest

GIRNAR:- The mountain, 6 km. from Junagadh city, has five principal peaks. It has roughly 8,500 steps. The third peak, Gorakhnath, at 3,661 ft (1,116 m) above sea level, is the highest. The area of the hills is approximately 10 km. To ascend the hills a stepaway is built UPPER KOT certainly worth seeing Jain tamples. Spots to visit Bhimkund, Satpuda, Gaumukhi Ganga, Pathar chati, Bhairavjap, Bharatvan Sheshavan, Hanumandhara. The peak of Ambaji, with a height of 3,330 ft (1,010 m)., is famous for the temple of Ambaji. Kamandal kund; stepway diverts between temples of Gorakhnath and Dattatreya. The path to Dattatreya temple is difficult, but on the top of the peak is a small temple on the padukas of Guru Dattatreya.

ASHOK SHILALEKH:- About 2 km east of Junagadh and 3 km from the foot of Girnar Hill, between the two places, is an edict of Emperor Ashoka inscribed on a rock dating from the 3rd century BC. The Ashokan edicts impart moral instructions on dharma, harmony, tolerance, and peace. An uneven rock, with a circumference of seven metres and a height of ten metres, bears insciptions in Brāhmī script etched with an iron pen.

SAKKARBAUG ZOO:- This is the oldest zoo in Gujarat and the 3rd oldest in India. The rare Gir lions are bred and supplied to other zoos.

THE WILD MUSEUM:- In the same premises as the zoo. Rare specimens of art furniture, stuffed animals, ancient coins, Persian Sanskrit inscriptions and various other articles of interest.

MAKABARA:- Nawabs were buried here. This is a fine specimen of medieval structure.

JAIN DERASAR:- Excellent Temple on Girnar Hill at 3,100 feet (940 m). There are many temples with excellent design.

NARSINH MEHTA NO CHORO:- This place is said to be one where the great poet Saint and reformer Narsinh Mehta held his assemblies of discovers in 15th century. Some believe that Lord Krishna held a traditional "Rasleela" dance for his devotee Narsinh Mehta.

UPPER KOT:- Uperkot is an impressive fort located on a plateau in the middle of town. It was originally built in 319 BC. It was covered over for 300 years, then rediscovered in 976 AD. It was besieged 16 times over an 800-year period. One siege lasted twelve years, but was not successful. Visitors enter the fort through a large gate. Some parts of the fortís walls are 20 m high. If, after entering the gate you turn left, you will come to Jama Masjid, which was built on top of a Hindu temple. It has 140 pillars supporting its ceiling.

Further down the road are what are believed to be old Buddhist caves, said to be 1,500 years old (dating from before 500 AD). They are carved into the rocky hill and have stone carvings and floral work. There are also the Khapra Kodia caves north of the fort, and the Babupyana caves south of the fort.
There is a huge, fifteen-foot cannon, made in Egypt in 1531. There are also two interesting large step wells (vavs) here. The 11th century Navghan Kuva has a circular stairway that descends over 50 m down into the well. The Adi Chadi Vav descends 170 steps.

DARBAR HALL MUSEUM:- Picture gallery , textiles, arms gallery, the kacheri, the hall which was used by Nawabs of Junagadh to hold their darbar. The Durbar Hall and Museum has an interesting collection of weapons, thrones, silver articles, costumes, paintings, tapestries, and palanquins on display. It is not far from the entrance to the fort.

GAYATRI MANDIR & VAGHESHWARI MANDIR:- On the way to Girnar Talati, are both of the beautiful temples of Maa Gayatri and Maa Vagheshwari. At every navratris, a mela is held.

SONAPUR:- Where many statues of saints are erected. It also has a Sai Baba temple and serves as a cemetery.

DAMODAR KUND:- Built in 500 a.d., this often reconstructed kund (water reservoir) is a check dam. This kund is about a km before the bottom of Girnar Hill. It is a sacred bathing tank. Close to Damodara Kund is Revati Kund. It is said that Revata left Dwarka and moved near Girnar Hill after his daughter, Revati, married Lord Balarama.

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